Antioch Soldier Among 5 Missing in Black Hawk Crash in Hawaii

A UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter makes its return trip to Jackson after taking part in a ‘BossLift’ on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016.
(Photo: Petty Officer 2nd Class Tara Molle/U.S. Coast Guard via AP)

A 30-year-old Antioch man is among five soldiers who have been missing since last Wednesday.

The Army and Coast Guard have been searching the waters off Oahu for nearly a week. The 25th Infantry Division, to which the soldiers were assigned, announced the end of the search Monday evening Nashville time.

Sgt. Michael Nelson, 30. of Antioch, was one of five to be lost after the crash.

Lt. Col. Curtis Kellogg, a spokesman for the 25th Infantry Division, said during a news conference that the “very, very difficult decision” was made after nearly a week of continuous search and rescue efforts.to end the search.

The others who were lost include: 1st Lt. Kathryn Bailey of Hope Mills, North Carolina; Chief Warrant Officer 3 Brian Woeber of Decatur, Alabama; and Chief Warrant Officer 2 Stephen Cantrell of Wichita Falls, Texas.

Maj. Gen. Christopher Cavoli said the five soldiers represent the best and the brightest of America. He says the soldiers have not been found and their families have been notified.

Cavoli was emotional during his remarks, and called the crash “a terrible situation.”

The helicopter was participating in a night exercise.

Capt. David Jenkins of the Honolulu Fire Department said rescuers had recovered a helmet and fuselage pieces last Wednesday.

Cavoli says the Army has not yet determined the cause of the crash.

It is the third crash of a military aircraft in recent months. Twenty-three of 26 Marines aboard an MV-22 Osprey were rescued near Australia earlier this month, and 16 service members died in the crash of a KC-130 cargo plane last month in Mississippi.

Jake Lowary covers veterans and military affairs for the USA Today Network. Reach him at 931-237-1583 or follow him on Twitter @JakeLowary.

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